3rd Grade Assessment: Reading & Math

What is the 3rd grade assessment?

3rd grade marks the first year that standardized state assessments of reading and math are administered in Oregon. The 3rd grade reading assessment is used to screen students for reading problems, monitor progress in reading over time, determine level of reading proficiency, and diagnose potential sources of reading difficulty. The math assessment measures a student’s depth of knowledge on applying concepts and procedures, analyzing and solving problems using math, and communicating or critiquing mathematical reasoning.

The Oregon Department of Education (ODE) has made changes to the 3rd grade assessment over time, and 2 of these changes occurred during OCID’s reporting timeline with one starting in the 2011-12 school year and the other starting in the 2014-15 school year. Results after these changes were made are not comparable to prior year data.

For education-related indicators, the year refers to the fall start of the academic year. For example, 2016 refers to the 2016-17 academic year. To learn more about the 3rd Grade Assessment data presented here and the changes made by ODE, check out our Technical Dictionary.

Why is the 3rd grade assessment important?

Reading is widely seen as the most crucial academic skill because it is the foundation for learning. 3rd grade reading is an important measure of child well-being because 3rd grade is seen as the final year children are ‘learning to read.’ After 3rd grade, they are ‘reading to learn.’ If children are not proficient readers by the end of 3rd grade, much of the curricula they will be taught in 4th grade and beyond will be very difficult to understand.

A range of high-quality research has documented that 3rd graders who are not reading at grade level are among the most vulnerable to drop out of school later, and also to experience a range of other behavioral and social problems. One of the strongest predictors of high school graduation is the ability to read proficiently by the end of third grade.

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To learn more about the 3rd grade assessment, please visit these Oregon Department of Education (ODE) resources:

Please remember the following
  • The OCID Child Well-being Dashboard only includes children born in Oregon since 2001.
  • OCID only includes education data for children attending Oregon public schools.
  • To display race and ethnicity categories consistently across multiple data sources, OCID currently combines information from vital statistics, education, Medicaid, and child welfare records. Visit our Race and Ethnicity Data Overview to learn more.
  • The Dashboard shows descriptive data, not causal relationships. In depth analyses are needed to understand why disparities or trends occur. OCID’s targeted analyses shed light on policy questions prioritized by the Governance Committee.

For more information about the details and limitations of the data, please visit our Technical Dictionary and Dataset Overview.

Ready to explore the data?

Use the interactive display below to discover how characteristics collected by state programs vary among groups of children with different well-being outcomes.


Data are a starting point for understanding children’s experiences; they do not fully describe an individual’s identity or experience.

Want to dive deeper?

Explore the interactive display below to investigate potential trends or disparities among groups of children with the same well-being outcome.


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Suggested citation: Center for Evidence-based Policy, Oregon Health & Science University. 3rd grade assessment: reading & math dashboard. Oregon Child Integrated Dataset (OCID) website. https://www.ocid-cebp.org/outcome/3rd-grade-assessment-reading-math/. Published [inserted ‘display updated’ date].

The Center for Evidence-based Policy partners with the Center for Health Systems Effectiveness, also at Oregon Health & Science University, on dashboard analytics.